Seven Life Domains - College Services Seven Life Domains - College Services

Seven Life Domains

What are the Seven Life Domains?

The Seven Life Domains are used in the Fostering Success Coaching model.¹ Casey Family Programs² identified seven domains as part of the It’s My Life framework. Success in these domains will promote your success in college, and in life.    

How to use the Seven Life Domains framework

  1. Assess — Organize life domains by ‘on track’ or ‘need improvement’
  2. Prioritize — Identify 1 life domain you want to improve now
  3. Learn — Begin building skills that promote your success by visiting, develop your college success skills.

Throughout the year, CSF will share resources and tools that help you build skills in each area. CSF will continue to develop tools and resources that will help you build those skills on your own, and with others. Visit our skills resource page to access information on these skills.

1 Unrau, Y.A. & Bennett, J.L. (2013). Fostering success coaching: Academic and career transformation for students from foster care. Kalamazoo, MI: The Center for Fostering Success at Western Michigan University.

2 Casey Family Programs (2006). It’s My Life:Postsecondary Education and Training. Author: Seattle, WA. http://www.casey.org/resources/publications/pdf/ItsMyLife_PostsecondaryEducation.pdf

Education and Academics

Success in this domain means that you are making the education and academic progress required to persist from term to term.

Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Meeting personal GPA targets
  • Making SAP (Satisfactory Academic Progress)
  • Utilizing tutoring or writing centers
  • Meeting with academic advisors
  • Meeting with faculty
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Finances and Employment

Adequate finances are required to pay for college, tuition, housing and other basic needs.  Satisfactory academic progress is required to maintain financial aid. Employment may be required to ensure financial needs can be met throughout college. Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Making SAP (Satisfactory Academic Progress)
  • On-time FAFSA completion
  • Exploring work-study or part-time jobs, as needed
  • Financial planning and budgeting
  • Understanding all gift (free) financial aid available to you
  • Resume development

Housing

All students need secure, safe and affordable housing in order to ensure they can focus on academics and campus life. Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Exploring housing options and selecting those that meet financial and social needs
  • Developing appropriate transportation plans based on housing selection
  • Ensuring a Plan B housing options
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Physical and Mental Health

Addressing new risks and challenges associated with college can be stressful. It is important to pay attention to how you feel—both physically and mentally. Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Health insurance and regular medical check-ups
  • Identifying what on-campus counseling and emergency resources are available to you
  • Exercise and stress management techniques
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Social Relationships and Connections

Social capital or networks of supportive relationships ensure we all function effectively. Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Joining or starting an interest group or club
  • Playing a leadership role
  • Building relationships with peers and faculty who support your success
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Cultural and Personal Identity

Feeling a sense of belonging in college is a challenge for many students. Self-conceptions evolve over our lives and develop based on individual life experiences. These experiences impact how we feel about ‘belonging’ on campus. Some goals and actions that will help ensure success in this domain include:

  • Establishing personal and professional goals
  • Understanding your core values and living by them
  • Embracing your cultural, ethnic and sexual identity
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Life Skills

There are many skills that are not necessarily taught in college, but are critical to success in life, including:

  • Social accountability
  • Time management
  • Planning
  • Follow-through
  • Problem-solving
  • Decision-making
  • Conflict resolution
  • Asking for help
  • Communication & Public speaking